Korean J Radiol. 2022 May 27. doi: 10.3348/kjr.2022.0003. Online ahead of print.
OBJECTIVE: To assess focal mineral deposition in the globus pallidus (GP) by CT and quantitative susceptibility mapping (QSM) of MRI scans and evaluate its clinical significance, particularly cerebrovascular degeneration.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: This study included 105 patients (66.1 ± 13.7 years; 40 male and 65 female) who underwent both CT and MRI with available QSM data between January 2017 and December 2019. The presence of focal mineral deposition in the GP on QSM (GPQSM) and CT (GPCT) was assessed visually using a three-point scale. Cerebrovascular risk factors and small vessel disease (SVD) imaging markers were also assessed. The clinical and radiological findings were compared between the different grades of GPQSM and GPCT. The relationship between GP grades and cerebrovascular risk factors and SVD imaging markers was assessed using univariable and multivariable linear regression analyses.
RESULTS: GPCT and GPQSM were significantly associated (p < 0.001) but were not identical. Higher GPCT and GPQSM grades showed smaller gray matter (p = 0.030 and p = 0.025, respectively) and white matter (p = 0.013 and p = 0.019, respectively) volumes, as well as larger GP volumes (p < 0.001 for both). Among SVD markers, white matter hyperintensity was significantly associated with GPCT (p = 0.006) and brain atrophy was significantly associated with GPQSM (p = 0.032) in at univariable analysis. In multivariable analysis, the normalized volume of the GP was independently positively associated with GPCT (p < 0.001) and GPQSM (p = 0.002), while the normalized volume of the GM was independently negatively associated with GPCT (p = 0.040) and GPQSM (p = 0.035).
CONCLUSION: Focal mineral deposition in the GP on CT and QSM might be a potential imaging marker of cerebral vascular degeneration. Both were associated with increased GP volume.